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Musicman Sterling fret noises

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by grunz7, Jun 23, 2013.


  1. grunz7

    grunz7

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2008
    So I am at a gig with my musicman sterling and having this weird fret sound issue when my right hand doesn't plug a note but "dampens" the string mainly at two and four (like playing a right handed ghost note) ... this creates some kind of right hand "slap" sound but actually a very annoying one - very sharp sound somehow as if the string is touching the pole piece of the pickup (which it isn't).

    Now the same right hand technique on my other basses "enhances" the rhythmical bass lines by just produces something like a ghost note and that actually drives the line nicely - but on the sterling it just annoys me, the band and the audience.

    Any one having a similar issue and some advice (other than completely changing my right hand technique)? Should I get rid of the sterling?

    Cheers
     
  2. Don41_2

    Don41_2 Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2012
    Location:
    Raleigh, Nc
    Had a similar issue with a used gl l2k. I raised the strings a bit and then lowed the pups by 1/2 to 3/4 of a turn. Solved it and the bass came alive. Might work with your issue.

     
  3. solderjunkie

    solderjunkie

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2008
    Location:
    Nashville TN
    My SR5 has a similar issue, but mine is a harmonic just ahead of the pickup... I have to move my playing hand 1/2" in either direction to stop it.

    Like Don wrote, lower the pup a bit and see if that solves it. If not, you might have to lose a little high-mids to hide it.
     
  4. grunz7

    grunz7

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2008
    Thanks - I'll give that a try.

    Has someone with a similar issue experimented with different strings? I am considering half or flat wound strings - although they probably won't result in a tone typically being expected from a musicman ...
     
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  6. spufman

    spufman

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2005
    Location:
    Central CT
    Sterling necks adjust so easily and precisely - give that wheel a slight turn in either direction and it should change the response for better or worse. Based on your description, I'd start by loosening it a hair (1/6th turn or so).
     
  7. grunz7

    grunz7

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2008
    Thanks spufman - tried adjusting the neck - no resolution ...

    But I went to my local music store to investigate the issue further and as it turns out it is a combination of the sterling and my bass amp - I am using an eden wtx-500 over a schroeder 15+L (and the tweeter is half turned on). It seems that the eden is an extremely bright sounding amp accentuating the "clack" - same bass setting run through a markbass - eq settings flat - gives me the kind of "ghost note" sound without the extreme clacky noise.

    Interestingly using my other 4 strings through the eden works fine - probably because they are passive?

    I'll play around a little bit more with the amp settings but may consider swapping the eden against an aguilar tonehammer or a markbass.
     
  8. grunz7

    grunz7

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2008
    So yesterday I did record 3 new songs in the studio and was using the sterling (with a set of brand new round wound strings) via the eden wtx-500 and - surprise - no clacking noises with my right hand technique anymore.

    Reason seems simple: on the bass only a slight bass boost and mid cut - treble in the middle and on the eden no eq settings just slight treble cut. As soon as I turned the treble to neutral on the eden the clacks showed up again ... so it seems that the eden is already with neutral eq settings a very bright sounding amp.

    Thanks to all the helpful replies here.

    Cheers
     
  9. spufman

    spufman

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2005
    Location:
    Central CT
    Glad you found settings that work for you. The Sterling is a great instrument in design and build.
     

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